Melissa Ramos is a young writer who attends Heritage Middle School in Ringgold, Georgia. After my visit to Heritage earlier this year, Melissa sat down and crafted a story about one of her cherished keepsakes—a necklace.
I'm so impressed with young writers like Melissa. They have such a fresh way of looking at the world and a wonderful way with words and phrases. If there is one thing that I wish every young writer believed, it is simply this—You are so much better than you think you are!
I hope you enjoy Melissa's story, and I hope it inspires you to think about one of your own keepsakes. Where did it come from? Why is it special? What memories does it hold? Write the story of your keepsake on paper and share it with others.
Melissa wrote about a necklace—a reminder of her grandfather's death and the kindness her sister extended to her. Here's Melissa's story titled, "Believe."
My family and I were in the car talking about how much fun we had at the beach. Our faces were as red as ripe tomatoes. You could still smell the salt water of the ocean.
My mom was driving which was very unusual. Then my dad, with a serious face, said he had something to tell us. I knew by the way he'd been acting that something was wrong—he wasn't about to tell us that we'd won the lottery. It only took him a minute to say one sentence, but it felt like an eternity.
"Your grandpa died this morning," he said.
Those five words quieted us all—as if the sentence took our voices away from us.
I couldn't believe what my dad had said. At that age, I'd never lost someone so important to me.
I don't remember crying when my dad told us the bad news. It just didn't register in my mind that I would never, ever see my grandpa again.
Three days later, which went as fast as a turtle crossing the world, we attended his funeral. That day was the day I understood that my grandpa was gone forever, and that he would not be coming back. I burst into tears.
My sister saw me and gave me a necklace. The necklace has a cross, a white pearl , and a circle inscribed with the word, "believe."
She told me each item on the necklace has a unique meaning. The cross means my grandpa is with God. The white pearl is going to wash my sadness away. And the little circle with the word, "believe," meant that everything was going to be okay—that I just need to trust that God has better plans than I do.
My sister always used to ask me: Do you want to make God laugh? Then tell him your plans.
And that's how a simple five-dollar necklace became as valuable as a diamond to me. I wouldn't sell it for a million dollars!
—Melissa Ramos, Heritage Middle School
Thanks for sharing your beautiful story, Melissa. I hope you continue writing. Believe in yourself—you are already a great writer.
I hope that Melissa's story inspires you to share your stories behind your keepsakes. Give it a try. You are a better writer than you think.
For more stories about keepsakes, check out the stories on this blog or pick up a copy of Project Keepsake. The last chapter of the book takes you step-by-step through the process of writing your own keepsake story.